Courtesy of JNS Photo credit: Elad Malka/GPO
Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant visits Iron Dome air-defense batteries in southern Israel on April 5, 2023.

 (April 5, 2023 / JNS) Following a barrage of rocket fire from the Gaza Strip into Israel on the eve of Passover, Israeli Defense Minister Yoav Gallant visited an Iron Dome air-defense battery on Wednesday morning stationed in Israel’s southern region, accompanied by Israeli Air Force Chief of Staff Brig. Gen. Eyal Greenboim.

The two were briefed on recent security events and spoke with Israel Defense Forces soldiers who intercepted the rockets launched overnight by terrorist groups based in Gaza.

Ten rockets were fired overnight on Tuesday and six in two separate barrages in the early morning hours on Wednesday.

Later in the day, Gallant convened a situation assessment to discuss ways to strengthen cooperation between the various security organizations in order to enable freedom of worship, while preventing clashes on the Temple Mount in Jerusalem. The briefing was attended by IDF Chief of the General Staff Herzi Halevi, as well as the heads of the Israel Securities Authority, the IDF’s Operations Directorate, the IDF’s Intelligence Directorate, COGAT and additional senior officials.

“Following a number of situation assessments, I conducted a visit and security briefing at the site of an Iron Dome battery, which was employed to intercept missiles fired from Gaza overnight. IDF troops are protecting the citizens of Israel on this seder night and throughout the holiday of Passover, here and everywhere across the country—in the air, at sea and on land,” said Gallant, according to a government press release.

“I want to be very clear: We will hit anyone who tries to harm us and exact a heavy price that will make them regret any threats against Israeli citizens or IDF troops,” he said.

The defense minister concluded with the hope that “we all enjoy a happy and peaceful Passover.”